Female football is the fastest growing segment of our game. With record growth each year, there’s never been more girls playing, umpiring and coaching Australian football.
Victoria is home to Australia’s most comprehensive female participation and high performance pathway, providing Victorian girls and women with more opportunities than ever before.
Women and girls are now regular coaches across the participation pathway.
AFL Victoria conducts annual orientation programs, teacher specific coaching courses, and Level 1 and 2 Coaching Courses at Auskick, Youth and Senior level across Victoria.
The Australian Football Coaches Association also provides an array of coaching resources to complement ongoing training needs.
Specific coach education programs encourage women and girls to become more involved and include female only courses for teachers, courses for men and women coaching female football, and annual AFCA ‘Female Coach of the Year’ awards at regional and state level.
Female field, boundary and goal umpires are commonplace in all community football leagues, and their numbers continue to rise as a result of leagues actively seeking women and girls out to umpire.
AFL Victoria runs school based umpiring academies across Victoria, helping girls and young women learn how to umpire in a safe, supportive and inclusive environment, before transitioning into community football.
The Basic Umpiring Course introduces teachers and students to the role and skills of field, boundary and goal umpiring, and officiating in general, and helps develop life skills such as leadership, critical and clear thinking, decision making, communication and management of people.
Course resources include a schools kit, interactive DVD and benefit packs for both students and teachers.
AFL Victoria also runs a Female Umpiring Academy, to assist in the elite development of Victoria’s most promising female field umpires to assist their progress through to VFL and AFL ranks.
Every football club in Victoria enjoys the volunteer and administration support of women and girls in community football clubs and leagues.
Many leagues have women serving on their boards, while all community football clubs have women on their committees or in their volunteer ranks.
Many women get involved in football administration by volunteering at their child’s or partner’s football club.
AFL Victoria recognises that club volunteers and administrators make a significant contribution to our sport and offers a range of education programs and training to the community in eight key learning areas: Football Operations, Financial Management, Committee Management, Planning, Risk Management, Volunteer Management, Community Partnerships and Junior Development.
AFL Victoria acknowledges the vital role that women and girls play both on and off the field in football.
The Fair Game: Respect Matters project, which is guided by the AFL’s Respect & Responsibility policy, is currently being delivered to selected community clubs.
Clubs are being asked to audit and adjust their policies and practices to make their community football club more inclusive, safe and supportive for women and girls.
Other programs and resource information include: Bouncing Racism Out of Sport, AFL Kids First (focuses on education of parent and spectator behavior at junior sport), Tackling Volunteers, and, the Quality League and Club Program.
Atu Bosenavulagi and Ryan Mann have taken different pathways to rise through the ranks in football, but share a clear common pride in their...06 MAY 2021 BY: NICK HULETT